Location: Blue Mountains
Today we went to the Blue Mountains – although our noses turned bright blue, no one felt blue because of all the beautiful sights we saw today. Though a few early birds woke up at four this morning still struggling to overcome their jet-lag, the more sensible majority of us woke up at a bright and breezy 5:45. Everyone sleepily trundled downstairs dressed from head to toe in all the layers we could pile on. Pajamas over jeans over leggings with fuzzy socks and layers of sweatshirts- the other people in the hostel thought we were insane when a bunch of teenage Michelin-man look-a-likes came down the stairs in search of food. We filled up on a cereal and loaded up on our bus, where we met up with our tour guide extraordinaire, Glenn. Jeb and Glenn made a special bond while we journeyed for two hours by bus through the Blue Mountains. As we passed our first Australian kangaroos, Alexa started theorizing as to how we might smuggle a baby joey back home, though her exotic farming plans were soon shot down as she recalled the annoying customs system…(Not like that will stop her!) We passed piles of snow on our way up the mountains, and we suddenly became thankful of our ridiculous number of layers. We stopped at several lookouts and looked at the stunning views; we even saw the famous blue haze rising over the mountains. We ate sandwiches for lunch with some Shapes and Snackos on the side. Then we embarked on our next adventure, Journey to the Bottom of the Three Sisters, via 37 flights of stone/wood/non-existent steps! By the end of the exhausting yet fulfilling trek, we lay our tired eyes upon the world’s steepest railroad track. We could hear the screams from petrified passengers above. We all piled up four people in a row, trying to mentally prepare for the super-steep ride. The train climbed pretty quickly, and it even went through a cave-like hole in the mountain before coming to an abrupt stop by the gift shop. Before heading back down the mountain, Christy and Meredith paused the group for a dance interlude, with some Australians playing traditional drums. All the people in the shop were entranced by their amazing dance moves; some other tourists even filmed their entire routine (falsely) thinking that they were professional dancers. Though today’s journey was a little cold and somewhat tiring, no one was blue after our day of amazing sights and crazy hikes through Australia’s Blue Mountains. With each day, we are all becoming better friends, and we can’t wait for all the adventures to come in the Whitsunday Islands!